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Saturday, October 23, 2021

Qatar Airways chief says A350 deliveries for this year are unlikely

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A350
A350

Qatar Airways‘ chief executive said he is pessimistic that he will receive a dozen A350 jets which were due to be delivered this year, Reuters reports.

The airline has an order in for 69 of the wide-bodied aircraft, according to its website, and it was supposed to get 12 of these this year.

However, manufacturer Airbus has been hit by late delivery of cabin equipment such as toilets and sets, which has put back its delivery schedule to airlines.

Back-up plan

Speaking today at the CAPA global aviation summit in Amsterdam, Akbar Al Baker told Reuters that he had doubts about Airbus meeting its deadline, which partly drove the airline’s order earlier this month of up to 100 aircraft from Boeing.

Asked about how likely he thought the A350 deliveries would be, Al Baker replied:

“I don’t think we will get them. That’s why we ordered Boeing, which we will start getting next year, to fill the gap with the Airbus deliveries.”

Akbar Al Baker at the launch of A350 services to the USA in December 2015
Akbar Al Baker at the launch of A350 services to the USA in December 2015

Qatar’s national flag carrier took delivery of the world’s first A350 nearly two years ago.

It currently has 11 of the aircraft, according to its website.

However, this is some way behind the original delivery plan, which was for Qatar Airways to receive 10 aircraft by the end of 2015, then one every month during 2016 and two each month in 2017.

Airbus said it was “working towards” meeting its target of more than 50 A350 deliveries in 2016, Reuters added.

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